Why use WHS Vail over Windows 7? RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • I have an HP MediaSmart server, and I like it because I can group a bunch of drives together.  However I am a little confused as to what WHS Vail really offers me.  You see, I also have an MCE PC which I record ~0-1 shows a day, and use an XBOX 360 extender with NetFlix for most of my media watching.  I use my WHS basically to just store my photos and videos, and making my home network available remotely over the internet.  I see little gain for WHS... why wouldn't I just put some bigger drives into my MCE PC and trash my WHS?  I can't even stream my WHS videos to my XBOX 360 because they are MTS files (which perhaps is the most common HD video format from cameras), however I can play them just fine in MCE.

    I just wish I could put MCE into WHS... anyway I think I plan on building a bigger Windows 7 MCE to be both my media server and storage device since WHS doesn't deliver.  I can solve server backup some other way (raid, mirroring or something), continue to use my home router and dyn dns, and still can use Remote Desktop into it.

    The only feature in Vail which looks really interesting to me is the WP7 app.  Is the WP7 app available in the RC?  If so has anybody tested it?  Does anybody know if it works on Windows 7?  Something tells me other apps will be available on WP7 which do just this if it is not already available.
    Friday, March 4, 2011 11:07 PM

All replies

  • One of the features I like best about WHS is the backup / restore. It just works. Every night, it wakes up my computers and backs them up and I never have to worry about them. The restore is just as easy. Pop in a CD, click on a couple of prompts and voila, your PC is restored. The remote streaming is a bonus. I also like the alerts from the dashboard which tell me if any of the computers need updates installed or have any other issues (like a failed backup).

    I plan to use WHS as my main video recorder. I installed a freeware application called NPVR (formerly known as GBPVR). It's pretty solid. Digital recording is pretty easy. Analog is a little tricky. The only thing you have to figure out is how to download and regularly update the program guide.

    Saturday, March 5, 2011 3:51 AM
  • After a few weeks with the the latest Vail release, I decided to kill it and convert the hardware to be an HTPC using Win7 Pro.  It's nice and pretty, but seems to have some quirks and bugs, and its advantages over v1 aren't awesome.  My old WHS v1 machine will continue to work to back up my computers, but I'll move all the video media to the HTPC.  Like the OP, I think it doesn't have enough features, and removing DE was a mistake (but that's been hashed enough).

    I may look at the final release candidate if there is another before it costs money.

    Saturday, March 5, 2011 11:14 PM